Friday, September 21, 2007

Riders vs. Lions: Grudge Match

Rider Prophet here getting ready for the third and final regular season meeting between the Riders and the Lions.

The Riders are coming off two lackluster performances which is cause for some concern given that the Lions are the top team in the league right now. However, the silver lining is that this game will be played in front of 28,800 Rider fans. We are tough be beat at home, having lost only 1 game in Regina this year. Of course that loss just happened to be to the BC Lions but the fact remains that playing at Mosaic Stadium is a big advantage for us.

When you think about it, we match up well against the Lions. We are good at stopping the run and bad at defending the pass. They have a good run game and bad QB. Some might say I'm under-valuing Jarious Jackson but let me just point something out... How many TDs has he thrown in the last 3 games? The answer is 1. So forgive me for not shaking in my boots at the though of having to face the mighty BC passing attack. If I were Richie Hall I would put 2 guys on Paris Jackson (the only WR Jarious throws to), 9 on Joe Smith and line Jamie Boreham up on the 5 yard line as an insurance policy (he doesn't have to cover, just punish anyone who manages to get past everyone else).

I would like to set one thing straight. People keep talking about how important it is that we get the win so we have the tie-breaker over BC. Although it is important for us to win to stay in contention in the west, the tie-breaker with BC is about as useful as Danny Mac's colour commentary since the only way that the tie-breaker will even come into play is if we tie one of our remaining games. That's right, we need to tie to tie BC. So let's give up this tie-breaker talk and just focus on winning for the sake of winning.

All the controversy surrounding Bill Belichick in the NFL has got me thinking. Belichick in an extremely successful coach and he cheated. Don Matthew's did the same thing and he's the CFL's winningest coach. This leads me to wonder if our good buddy Wally Buono is also prone to cheating. However, if Wally does decide to steal our defensive calls, the joke's on him. Imagine his surprise when his spy informs him that our next defensive play is as follows: "OK Wally, the call is: fail to contain the QB, play 5 yards off every receiver and then miss the tackle on the ball carrier letting him stroll easily in for a TD."

In other news, Adam Rita made some controversial comments about Damon Allen this week on a local radio show. Rita said that Damon has something to contribute, just not on the field and that the Argos have been stunted by having Damon at QB for so long. When questioned about these comments Rita coyly said he didn't remember making those comments and it doesn't sound like something he'd say. Note to Adam Rita: That excuse doesn't work too well when the comments in questions where said on public radio. Note to Damon Allen: Despite leading the team to the east final every year since you joined it, winning a Grey Cup and being named league MVP, you are apparently stunting the Argos as an organization. In the future, please try a little harder.

In Hamilton, Casey Printers will get his second start tonight since signing with the Ti-Cats. Last week's performance was nothing short of embarrassing (a true sign that Printers is fitting in quite well in Hamilton). But to be fair, Printers was playing on 3 days practice and without his starting RB and top WR so hopefully the game against Calgary will go a bit better. Regardless of how the Printers-lead Ti-cats finish the season, I think there's an important lesson that all prospective coaches/GMs should learn from the situation. That lesson is: Contrary to popular belief, signing a big name QB will not improve your receivers' catching abilities, make your O-line block better or improve your defense's ability to stop your opponent's offensive attack. Write that down.

That's it for now. Hope to see you all down at the game tomorrow. This is the Rider Prophet signing off.

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